Fresh Rumen Liquid Inoculant Enhances the Rumen Microbial Community Establishment in Pre-weaned Dairy Calves

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Huuki , H , Ahvenjaervi , S , Lidauer , P , Popova , M , Vilkki , J , Vanhatalo , A & Tapio , I 2022 , ' Fresh Rumen Liquid Inoculant Enhances the Rumen Microbial Community Establishment in Pre-weaned Dairy Calves ' , Frontiers in Microbiology , vol. 12 , 758395 .

Title: Fresh Rumen Liquid Inoculant Enhances the Rumen Microbial Community Establishment in Pre-weaned Dairy Calves
Author: Huuki, Hanna; Ahvenjaervi, Seppo; Lidauer, Paula; Popova, Milka; Vilkki, Johanna; Vanhatalo, Aila; Tapio, Ilma
Contributor organization: Department of Agricultural Sciences
Helsinki One Health (HOH)
Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science (HELSUS)
Animal Science Research
Date: 2022-01-12
Language: eng
Number of pages: 19
Belongs to series: Frontiers in Microbiology
ISSN: 1664-302X
Abstract: The development of the functional rumen in calves involves a complex interplay between the host and host-related microbiome. Attempts to modulate rumen microbial community establishment may therefore have an impact on weaning success, calf health, and animal performance later in life. In this experiment, we aimed to elucidate how rumen liquid inoculum from an adult cow, provided to calves during the pre-weaning period, influences the establishment of rumen bacterial, archaeal, fungal, and ciliate protozoan communities in monozygotic twin calves (n = 6 pairs). The calves were divided into treatment (T-group) and control (C-group) groups, where the T-group received fresh rumen liquid as an oral inoculum during a 2-8-week period. The C-group was not inoculated. The rumen microbial community composition was determined using bacterial and archaeal 16S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene, protozoal 18S rRNA gene, and fungal ITS1 region amplicon sequencing. Animal weight gain and feed intake were monitored throughout the experiment. The T-group tended to have a higher concentrate intake (Treatment: p < 0.08) and had a significantly higher weekly weight gain (Treatment: p < 0.05), but no significant difference in volatile fatty acid concentrations between the groups was observed. In the T-group, the inoculum stimulated the earlier establishment of mature rumen-related bacterial taxa, affecting significant differences between the groups until 6 weeks of age. The inoculum also increased the archaeal operational taxonomic unit (OTU) diversity (Treatment: p < 0.05) but did not affect the archaeal quantity. Archaeal communities differed significantly between groups until week 4 (p = 0.02). Due to the inoculum, ciliate protozoa were detected in the T-group in week 2, while the C-group remained defaunated until 6 weeks of age. In week 8, Eremoplastron dilobum was the dominant ciliate protozoa in the C-group and Isotricha sp. in the T-group, respectively. The Shannon diversity of rumen anaerobic fungi reduced with age (Week: p < 0.01), and community establishment was influenced by a change of diet and potential interaction with other rumen microorganisms. Our results indicate that an adult cow rumen liquid inoculum enhanced the maturation of bacterial and archaeal communities in pre-weaning calves' rumen, whereas its effect on eukaryotic communities was less clear and requires further investigation.
Subject: microbiome manipulation
microbiome establishment
dairy calf
ciliate protozoa
anaerobic fungi
rumen function
412 Animal science, dairy science
Peer reviewed: Yes
Rights: cc_by
Usage restriction: openAccess
Self-archived version: publishedVersion

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